Definition of ungainly in English:

ungainly

adjective

  • (of a person or movement) awkward; clumsy.

    ‘an ungainly walk’
    • ‘That most people walk in an ungraceful, ungainly and awkward manner with a forward inclination of the body does not mean that it is the normal way of walking.’
    • ‘He was an ungainly figure and when he danced, many whistled, hooted, and laughed at him.’
    • ‘Holmes's ticket did have a red circle and he stood in an ungainly stance that was in keeping with his disguise.’
    • ‘Her steed mumbled something inaudible as he restarted his ungainly walk to the church doors.’
    • ‘The thin, ungainly boy didn't seem to have the makings of a star gymnast.’
    • ‘I was ungainly and I was bored by sport, which in Australia is a sure sign that you're a bad person.’
    • ‘Under the low slanting ceiling of the bathroom, he seems clumsy and ungainly.’
    • ‘Another ungainly blow from me, and my sword was met with the blade of Conrad's sword and was quickly swept aside.’
    • ‘Taylor was always playing catch up against an energetic, ungainly player who just would not lie down.’
    • ‘In spite of the ungainly figure he cuts, there is something instantly soothing about the monk.’
    • ‘But there was also a beauty in the ungainly awkwardness but obvious enthusiasm of the supporting roles.’
    • ‘Mothers and fathers send out the message that boys are awkward, ungainly and silly.’
    • ‘Do we identify with the ungainly, terrified wretch who will soon be dead meat, or do we get a thrill imagining ourselves as the sleek, athletic predator?’
    • ‘He felt clumsy and awkward in the air, his body too ungainly to be properly streamlined.’
    • ‘Seeing how terribly the trip strained the ungainly mother, Indira was amazed at her stoic determination to continue.’
    • ‘Not so large that they were ungainly and made him clumsy, but not so small that you would be suspicious of him.’
    • ‘He was one that fans may not have taken to straight away because he's ungainly, but he would have won them over with his goals.’
    • ‘I was always a bit awkward and ungainly as a child, so I thought that maybe I was just on the clumsy side.’
    • ‘Finding that they did, he tried a few ungainly steps toward the door.’
    • ‘The high ceilings and unbroken expanses of wall in such a house can make the rooms seem awkward and ungainly.’
    awkward, clumsy, ungraceful, graceless, inelegant, gawky, gangling, maladroit, gauche, inept, blundering, bungling, bumbling, lumbering, uncoordinated
    View synonyms

Origin

Mid 17th century: from un- ‘not’ + obsolete gainly ‘graceful’, based on Old Norse gegn ‘straight’.

Pronunciation

ungainly

/ʌnˈɡeɪnli/